LOW THIA KHIANG: VOTING IN OPPOSITION HAS MADE GOVT MORE RESPONSIVE

The government has become more responsive to the people’s struggles, says Workers’ Party (WP) secretary-general Low Thia Khiang, and said this is a sign that Singapore is moving towards a First World Parliament as promised in the WP’s 2011 General Election manifesto.

In an online post published yesterday, Mr Low pointed out that many key policy changes made by the Government after the 2011 General Election were actually similar to proposals that the Workers’ Party had made in its 2011 manifesto.

For example, WP had proposed that employers adopt a “Singaporeans first” policy when hiring, and that foreign manpower should be hired in positions Singaporeans are unable to fill. This resulted in the government implementing the Fair Consideration Framework – which encourages employers to consider Singaporeans fairly when they are hiring.

After the WP called for a compulsory Basic Hospitalisation Insurance scheme for acute hospital bills, the government implemented MediShield Life, which would replace MediShield, to provide protection for all Singaporeans for life with better coverage and payouts.

The WP had also said HDB flat prices should not be pegged to the resale market price, but should instead be pegged to the median incomes of Singaporean households who qualify to buy flats. Thus, the government has since 2013 pegged prices of new flats to 25% of the median monthly household income to pay for mortgage instalments on a 25-year loan.

When WP suggested in 2011 that Permanent Residents should only be allowed to buy resale flats if they have been PRs for at least three years, the government implemented new rules in 2013 stating that new Singapore PRs have to wait at least three years before buying a resale public flat.

Last but not least, WP had called on the Government to build more infrastructure to supplement the public transportation system and pay for the initial operating equipment of public transport service. This led the government to declare in 2014 that it would take over all bus operating assets and infrastructure, and will contract out bus services.

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